Stir-Fried Pac Choi with Ginger and Garlic
Here's a quick and easy way to get greens on the dinner table.
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
1 bunch fresh pac choi
2 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce
Salt and ground black pepper
Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add garlic and ginger and cook 1 minute. Add pac choi and soy sauce cook 3 to 5 minutes, until greens are wilted and stalks are crisp-tender. Season, to taste, with salt and black pepper.
I had some of this at City Market last week and it was really tasty.
3 Tbsp grainy mustard
2 Tbsp mayonaise
2 Tbsp capers, chopped
dash hot sauce or cayenne, to taste
juice of half a lemon
salt & pepper, to taste
Peel and julienne the celeriac. Combine the mustard, mayo, & capers. Add hot sauce or cayenne, lemon juice, salt and pepper to taste. Combine dressing with celeriac. Use your hands to mix thoroughly. Adjust seasoning as needed.
Spicy Celeriac and Carrot Soup
1 tsp olive oil
2 medium onions, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1/2 cup roasted, peeled, seeded, and chopped Poblano chilies (canned)
1 celeriac, peeled and diced
1 pound carrots, peeled and diced
2 vegetable stock cubes made up with 7.5 cups boiling water
Fresh coriander, roughly chopped
Freshly ground black pepper
Heat the oil in a large saucepan and cook the onion until softened. Add the garlic and red chilli and cook for a further minute. Combine the vegetables and add to the saucepan, allowing them to cook for a few minutes before adding the vegetable stock and half of the fresh coriander.
Bring to a boil, reduce the heat, partially cover with a lid and allow to simmer for 25 minutes.
Blend the soup in a processor until smooth. Return the soup to the saucepan, season to taste and warm through before serving, sprinkled with coriander.
Baby Greens with Roasted Carrots and Potatoes
This is a wonderful early spring salad.
1/2 tablespoons tarragon white-wine vinegar
1/4 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 cup olive oil
2 medium carrots
1 lb small new potatoes (about 1 inch in diameter) or fingerlings (1 to 1 1/2 inches long), scrubbed well
1 teaspoon olive oil
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 bag shoots mesclun mix
1/3 cup fresh basil, chives or other fresh herbs
Whisk together vinegar, mustard, salt, and pepper. Add oil in a slow stream, whisking until emulsified. Put oven racks in upper and lower thirds of oven and preheat oven to 425°F.
Chop potatoes and carrots into 1" chunks. Toss carrots and potatoes with oil and salt in a small baking pan and roast in lower third of oven, shaking pan occasionally, until veggies are tender, 25 to 30 minutes. Add potatoes and carrots to all greens and herbs. Add vinaigrette and toss gently to coat.
Basil Lime Gimlet
I love drinks featuring herbs. This of drink just screams summer to me!
4 large basil leaves
1/2 oz. simple syrup
2 1/2 oz. vodka
3/4 oz. fresh lime juice
In a cocktail shaker, muddle 3 of the basil leaves with the simple syrup. Add the codka, lime juice and ice and shake. Strain into a chilled martini glass and garnish with the remaining basil leaf.
This is a great way to use your basil. The puree is very similar to pesto without the cheese and nuts. It's thinner and lighter and a great addition to grilled zucchini, roasted pepper, or green beans.
1 small clove garlic
1 bunch basil
1/3 cup olive oil
Pound the garlic in a mortar with 1/4 tsp salt until smooth. Set aside.
Bring a pot of water to a boil, add the basil leaves, and leave them for just a few seconds until they're bright green, then drain immediately. In a food processor or blender, puree the drained leaves, garlic mixture, and olive oil until smooth. Season to tast. The sauce is best used immediately, but can be stored in an airtight container for 1-2 days.
Even though spring is here it's still great weather to enjoy soup. Here's one you can have ready in about 40 mins. Adapted from Mollie Katzen's Enchanted Broccoli Forest.
1 medium potato, peeled and diced small (about 2 cups diced)
2 1/2 cups water
1 tablespoon butter
2 cups minced onion
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1 1/2 teaspoons salt (or to taste)
1 medium stalk celery, finely minced
1 small red bell pepper, finely minced
4-5 cups corn
White pepper to taste
1 cup milk, at room temperature (lowfat OK)
Place the potatoes and water in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil, lower to a simmer, cover, and cook until the potatoes are tender. Set aside.
Melt the butter in a kettle or Dutch oven. Add the onion, thyme, and salt, and cook over medium-low heat, stirring. After about 5 minutes, add celery. Five minutes later add the cooked potatoes with all their liquid, the red bell pepper, the corn, and a few shakes of white pepper. Stir well, cover, and reduce heat. Cook quietly for about 5 minutes longer.
Using a blender or food processor, purée about half the solids (about 2 to 3 cups--it doesn't have to be exact!) in some of the soup's own liquid. Return this to the kettle, and let it rest until serving time.
Don't actually cook the soup any further; simply heat it--gently!-- until it's hot enough to eat. Serve immediately.
Braised Pac Choi
Braising your pac choi makes it so tender and tasty.
1 lbs bok choy
1-2 tbsp olive oil
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 tsp white pepper
1-2 tbsp rice vinegar
1 tbsp toasted sesame oil
Trim the base of the pac choi. Then cut the leaves crosswise into 1 1/2-inch-wide strips. Place a pot, large enough to hold all the pac choi, over medium heat. When it is hot, add the olive oil and coat it evenly. When the oil is hot, add the onion and stir-fry until softened, about 2 to 3 minutes. Add the pac choi and season with the salt and pepper. Cover and cook until tender, stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes. Stir in the vinegar and toasted sesame oil, serve hot. Serves 2.
Melted butter, brown sugar, and dill complement the carrots while bringing out the carrots' natural flavor.
3 cups peeled and sliced carrots
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
Place carrots in a skillet and pour in just enough water to cover. Bring to a boil over medium heat; simmer until water has evaporated and the carrots are tender. Stir in butter, brown sugar, dill, salt, and pepper.
These are the best granola bars. I love having them around as it keeps me from reaching for store bought ones. Recipe from The Homemade Pantry by Alana Chernila.
1/4 cup unsalted butter
1/4 cup coconut oil, or butter
3/4 cup peanut butter
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
2 tbsp vanilla extract
1/3 cup honey
2 1/2 cups rolled oats
1 1/2 cups sliced almonds
1/2 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup oat bran (or 1/2 cup rolled oats ground to a powder in the blender or food processor)
1/4 cup sesame seeds
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp kosher salt
Preheat the oven to 350F. Line a 9x13 baking pan with parchment paper, leaving extra paper to pull the finished product out of the pan.
In a large saucepan combine the butter, coconut oil, peanut butter, brown sugar, vanilla, honey, and 2 tbsp water. Cook over medium heat, stirring frequently, until you have a uniform syrup. Remove from heat. Add the oats, almonds, coconut, chocolate chips, oat bran, sesame seeds, and cinnamon. Stir until the dry ingredients are thoroughly coated. Transfer the mixture to the prepared pan, and press it as firmly into the pan as possible, first using your hands, then using a spatula or wooden spoon to flatten the top. Sprinkle the salt over the top.
Bake until the edges darken, 35 to 40 minutes. The mixture will be soft when you take it out of the oven, but allow it to cool completely before taking it out of the pan and cutting into 16 squares.
Banana Cream Pie Overnight Oatmeal
I haven't tried this way of making oatmeal yet but the idea intrigues me. It's simple- make up an oats mixture, refrigerate it overnight, and then enjoy the next morning. You can add in any different fruits or nuts, heat it up, or enjoy it cold.
1/2 cup old fashioned rolled oats
1 tsp. chia seeds (optional)
Pinch of salt
Dash of ground cinnamon
Dash of grated nutmeg
½ cup fat milk
¼ cup low plain yogurt
½ tsp. vanilla extract
Seeds scraped from ½ vanilla bean
1 ripe banana, divided
Chopped nuts such as walnuts or pecans, for serving
Turbinado or brown sugar, for serving
In a jar, combine the oats, chia seeds, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Add in the milk, yogurt, vanilla extract and vanilla bean seeds (if using). Divide the banana into thirds. Mash two thirds of it well with a fork and add to the jar with the oats. Slice the remaining third and add this to the jar as well. Place the lid on the jar and shake vigorously until the mixture is evenly combined (this may take a minute or two). Refrigerate overnight.
Remove the jar lid, sprinkle nuts and/or sugar over oatmeal as desired. Serve.